Clean, condition, touch-up: bag-cleaning day

As today is a holiday (i.e. the 119th Independence Day), I took the whole day to sort my things and clean my bags. I had already run out of leather-cleaning stuff, and I’ve been wanting to drop by SM Megamall to buy some.

It was a quick and breezy ride going there, as there was no traffic. As expected, there were a lot of people inside the mall, though.

Getting the good stuff

I went straight downstairs to the Lower Ground area, where this leather-care Mecca is found. I have been hoping to go there again, but could not find the time as SM Megamall was out of the way.

After careful consideration of what I needed (not to mention foresight of not being able to go back again for months), I was able to buy a couple of products to help me on the day’s agenda.

A shelf of leather care products

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Winter (again!) in Korea – Nami Island (again) — or should I say autumn in December

extremely picture-heavy post

For our last full day in Korea, the last thing to visit was Nami Island. For days, we have been checking Instagram with #NamiIsland to see if it is snowing there. But unfortunately, until the morning that we had to go, there was none. We actually had nothing else to do, so we might as well continue there.

Unlike 2012’s Nami, we woke up quite late for the day. We were confident not to get lost or anything as it would be our second time. Quite uneventful if you ask me — no earmuffs left in the hostel or anything like that. No need for it actually as, at our fourth day, we already got used to the cold. #thecoldneverbotheredmeanyway

Waiting for the train - Hermes astres et soleils silk scarf, Jil Sander tan hobo bag, Gianne Versace double-breasted wool coat

Waiting for the train

This Train to Busan stampeding zombies realness

For those who dropped by here looking for directions to Nami Island, you can always visit the post from 2012. Everything was pretty much the same. Time flew by so quickly, non? =)

But one thing that has not changed was the sleeping/waking match during the trip. Mon, of course, can nap once he takes a seat. Meanwhile, I had to stay awake unless we want to miss our stop.

We arrived around lunch time, thus we had to eat first because we did not fancy eating anything in Nami. There was this restaurant near the parking lot, and it was surprisingly not packed with tourists. While having lunch, though, I have been receiving messages from work due to some “office emergency”.

I could not believe what was happening. I very well knew that I had work stuff settled before going to vacation. I was in the phone for around 20 mins, trying to explain something I could not see. I should not have turned on the Wi-Fi. ^O^

Lunch first before taking the ferry

After lunch, we went straight ahead to the wharf along with the others. It only took around 3 minutes before the next ferry arrived. From the glass window, I was looking eagle-eye at Nami Island to see if there was snow. Yup, there was really none. It was going to be an autumn in December, then.

In a sea of black

Upon arriving at Nami Island, tourists usually turn right, straight to where most sights were. We, on the other hand, took a left turn, so that we can avoid the other tourists. We never managed to visit this side of the island because Mon had been freezing, even before reaching the metasequoia tree lane. Out of all the tourists who disembarked, there were about eight of us who went the other way.

Hello from the other side

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Hats off to my five years!

I left the house quite early because we had to be in the office for our ride, which left exactly at 2:15 PM. I was not quite sure with the Jil Sander shirt I planned to wear, so I brought another shirt with me just in case I had a last minute change of heart.

Gray CK Calvin Klein and Jil Sander dress shirts - Manila, Philippines

But in the end, I decided to stick with my original plan, even if I had an inkling that I might be under-dressed for the event because of the shortage in sleeves. The invitation called for ‘Business Formal’ but I just pretended that I didn’t get the memo.

Mirror, Mirror - Jil Sander dress shirt, short sleeves

Jil Sander shirt with contrasting cuff sleeves, tailored skinny pants,  black Lanvin leather belt, Prada leather shoes and black Gucci sling bag - Manila, Philippines

We arrived early in the venue at Endurun, McKinley Hill. It was my first time to set foot in that place and I readily appreciated the architecture of the building upon entering ‘the gate’.

Enderun in McKinley Hill

While waiting for the event to start - Enderun, McKinley Hill

I was with few of my officemates that I sincerely like(Ayen, Kait and Rev), and it was also delightful to be with other people I knew from other teams. It was like one big reunion and nostalgia as we all realized that we have been employed for five years already in the company. We can now search for opportunities elsewhere, just kidding.

Rev, Ayen and I

Ayen and I

The program immediately took off with the awarding of plaques of appreciation, first, to those who have been employed for five years in the company. Of course, none were paying attention to the plaques but as to WHAT would be the other thing handed out. It was a paperbag for a TechnoMarine watch. We all sighed in relief. Days before, there was a rumor that they might give us Tiffany ballpoint pens instead and I was personally hoping that the rumors were not true. The year before, they gave out Charriol bracelets and I expected no less than that. In fact, I’m fine with the bracelet but a watch was of course more welcome. =D As there was a disproportionate number of people who were employed for five years, it took a much longer time to hand out what must be given.

With Angel

Then a sort-of appreciation speech was given by two people from each batch and Angel, a classmate/course mate of mine from UP Diliman, was one of them. She went to to give her experience right from the beginning, and I mean from the beginning beginning when she started out with her interview. She also mentioned memorable events from her first months, particularly that Manila Peninsula rebellion on November 29, 2007, which was also the same date that I have signed my contract before officially starting four days after. She proceeded to share everything that happened to her, including her growth within the company and it made me realize one thing — girl was lucky to have that opportunity because she has been promoted four times within half a decade. And what about me? I realized early on, like right on my first year, that I have limited growth opportunities within the group I found myself in. Then I decided to go back to school and take my master’s degree. =D Let’s see what might happen within the following year because I see significant changes happening.

Enderun at night - McKinley Hill

Pretty yellow lights - Enderun, McKinley Hill

With our former manager, Ms. Fen

Anyway, the night had fallen and the program was finally finished. We proceeded outside for the cocktail party and we have been b*tching moments before how famished we were. Frankly, I did not care much about the things I put on my plate, and the only thing I can remember was that they served three kinds of pasta. The waiters were frequently passing by our side of the ‘lawn’, and we just kept on getting sweets after sweets. LOL Rev managed to get boxes of cupcakes for us, which I have reserved to give to Mon. He likes desserts a lot, non? =D

Cupcake for Mon

So now, what about that watch? I had opened the box in the venue right after receiving it but I waited until I got back in the office to inspect what was inside. It was a Technomarine Cruise Original 110042 watch. I searched for it online and it was at sold at US$ 375 in their website. *wolf-whistles* It wasn’t bad after all, even if I knew that they might have gotten a considerable discount since they have bought a lot.

The watch - TechnoMarine Cruise Original 110042

Had to change from white to black immediately - Technomarine Cruise Original 110042 watch

My initial instinct was to remove the white straps and change it into black. More discreet and less prone to any grime and dirt (though I’m perfectly sure that the straps were made to be more or less resistant to superficial dirt). Then I found out that there was a hidden ‘something’ underneath the white strap — our company logo. It was as if I instinctively removed the white straps, without deliberately knowing about that. But think about it, with the changing of the straps, I can be creative with the combinations so it was like getting several watches in one. LOL

I remember categorically saying in my first interview with my then-soon-to-be managers that I would stay in the company for two years, three years tops. Never say never. I definitely know that I will not stay to reach ten years and I foresee a maximum of 18-24 months before I call it quits. Time to plan this time well.

What to wear for that office event

This Friday, our company will host an event for those who have served for five/ten/fifteen years (wow, fifteen!?!?). I will be celebrating my fifth year working on the 3rd of December but I was luckily included in the list. We were asked to come in “business formal” for the event and I still had no idea what to wear until last night.

Jil Sander Button-down polo with contrasting cuff sleeves
(In desperate need of ironing LOL)

As much as possible, I do not want to wear long-sleeves and if I can find one, I’d wear a short-sleeves polo. And then I came upon this Jil Sander button-down, short-sleeves dress shirt — problem solved! I was really happy because it has the exact elements I was looking forward to wear. Short-sleeves in a very comfortable material, with the seam detail at the back. What I love most was the contrasting color peeking from the sleeves. I’m not too sure whether it was meant to be like that but I will definitely cuff the sleeves when I wear it.

Jil Sander Button-down polo with contrasting cuff sleeves - details - Manila, Philippines

As the length was reaching my backside, it needed to be tucked inside my pants. I’m mostly boring with my pants choices and I might also ditch my Doc Martens for the event in my attempt to look formal, so I’m so happy that my minimalist with a punch top will compensate with that boredom. The size, on the other hand, was much flattering to my built, unlike the other Jil Sander I had in June. I need not starve myself. =D

Look number 1 from Jil Sander S/S 2010 Menswear
Photo from vogue.co.uk

I found a similar design from Jil Sander S/S 2010. By the looks of it, the sleeves should not be cuffed. But as I am not a 6-foot model, I don’t want to look shorter than I already am, so it has to be cuffed!